A dog that is fearful, overly anxiety or showing signs of aggressiveness can be a challenging target for behavior modification and will certainly need more time and patience from YOU. Read on for some tips on how to treat dog anxiety naturally to start your training!
Some common anxiety behaviors exhibits on most breed of dogs include aggressive displays of fear or panic and submissive urinating. These behaviors are quite common, yet they are quite scary because your dog is making it clear that he interprets these behaviors as threatening.
When a dog is in a situation where he feels threatened, he will look to defend himself against the perceived threat. In defense mode, he will either bark, lunge or bite. When you are aware that your dog is behaving aggressively, you must stay calm.
If you show or even acknowledge that your dog has aggressive feelings, he can spark an attack on you as he may see this as a chance to get away from the attacker. Thus, it’s important to define a comfort zone for your dog so that he can “go” to there when he feels threaten or anxiety.
We develop our own comfort zone in our own personal settings, this is also a necessity for your dog. It is important to give him the opportunity to create this comfort zone and you can help to relieve your dog’s anxieties by creating the right space for him in his little private canine world.
Once you have create a private space for your canine friend, he will gain a sense of ownership, and become secure in his space. This will “create” a peaceful dog.
There are many ways your dog’s anxiety can be addressed. Here are a few common treatments and how they work.
1. Change your Dog’s Focus – Many dogs turn to destructive behavior because they are looking for a way to get their focus off in what is making them scared or anxious. If you want your dog to stop chasing cars, you need to change the association they have made.
2. Find an Answer – Just like a child having difficulty learning about colors (could be because of “color blind”), you would need to find out “What” and “Why” your dog is behaving anxiety and work on addressing this factors. As an example, before training your dog to sit, make sure that there is nothing in his training that is causing him to stress. If he feels stress because of the crowd that is “circling” him, bring him to a more quiet place for training.
3. Behavior Modification – Obedience training can be one of your approach to treat your dog’s anxiety. Equipped yourself with the knowledge on how to apply this technique to change his behavior patterns. Looks for positive reinforcement, punishment-free methods of training.
4. Separation Anxiety – The least pleasant experience for your puppy is to be separated from you (such as when you are going to work or going for grocery and being gone for couple of hours). You would need to help him readjust to being alone for a while and for this, crate training could be an effective choice.
Leave him with his favorite toys in his crate, and remember to ley him out of the crate when you are back home. Separation anxiety is a real issue and it should be taken seriously when dealing with your puppy. If you don’t deal with it right away, it can spiral out of control pretty quickly.
Keep in mind that your dog should have his own space. In the wild, dogs need a space they can call their own, where they can rest, sleep and have a safe place to raise their offspring. The same is true in the home with your pet and a crate will be an ideal option.
Crate is often view as a den for dogs, a place that they feel safe and secure to be in. It should be filled with your dog’s favorite toys and of course, a warm comfortable blanket or bed which he can sleep on peacefully all night.
Some pet owners may believe that crating your puppy is cruel, however, if done correctly, crate can be a safe haven for your dog. Instinctively, dogs want a place they can call their own, a territory, a personal area within their home. A crate can provide this area. It can be a comforting place for him especially when he is scared or anxious.
It is very important to be aware of your dog’s personality before you begin crating. Obviously dogs that are scared, timid or not adaptable will not do well in confined space. These types of dogs will only make matters worse and experience more anxiety.
You should never use the crate as a form of punishment. If you do,, your dog will learn to fear it and gets anxiety when you force him into the crate.
With effort, you can find a way to change your dog’s anxiety behaviors and fit in with everyone’s lifestyle. In time to come, you will have a well-behaved furry friend as a member of your family.